Bill Herrle, the National Federation of Independent Business’s executive director for Florida, released the following statement today concerning Amendment 2, the proposed state constitutional amendment that would mandate a minimum wage of $15 an hour:
“Running a small business is never easy, but it’s especially hard right now.
“Business was good until the pandemic stopped Florida’s economy in its tracks. People stopped traveling. Attractions, shops and restaurants had to close or immediately begin operating under severe restrictions in order to slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus, and some of the businesses that thought they had closed temporarily soon realized they had closed for good.
“These are trying times for Florida’s small businesses, and Amendment 2, the amendment to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour, would make things even worse.
“Small businesses have notoriously thin profit margins. If owners are forced to increase the starting wage, they’re going to make tough decisions. Do they raise prices and risk driving away customers, or do they try to manage labor costs by eliminating positions, cutting people’s hours or reducing benefits? The choices will be especially difficult now, when small businesses are trying to get through this pandemic.
“The latest survey by the NFIB Research Centers shows one in five small businesses already expect to eliminate jobs within the next six months because of the coronavirus. Changing the state constitution to increase the cost of doing business in Florida is not to going to help.”